A Republican candidate is suing a Democratic congresswoman and the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee for defamation for doctoring his statements in campaign ads.
Veteran actor and Republican Chris Mitchum, son of Hollywood icon Robert Mitchum, lost a tight race to Democratic Rep. Lois Capps this past November in California’s 24th congressional district. But he only lost after Capps and her campaign committee (both defendants in the suit) fabricated a Mitchum quote in ads paid for by the Washington, D.C.-based DCCC.
The Democrats improperly clipped Mitchum’s televised statements to make it seem like he was spurning his own district in favor of being a “Tea Party backed guy.”
“After careful examination of the facts, I have authorized my attorneys to file a lawsuit today seeking to hold Representative Capps, her associates and the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee in Washington responsible for maliciously, knowingly and improperly manipulating my digital image and audio message so as to distort and destroy the public’s accurate perception of my campaign and message and it’s positive support for my candidacy,” Mitchum said in a statement provided to The Daily Caller.
Mitchum delivered the following line in a local television interview during the campaign: “I do not intend to go to Washington to represent the 24th district to bring back baseball fields. That’s not why I’m going.”
But Capps’ campaign cut the clip so it looked like Mitchum was saying “I do not intend to go to Washington to represent the 24th district,” and then spliced it into a campaign ad.
This video produced by Mitchum illustrates Capps’ deception:
The Capps campaign also doctored the quote in a radio ad paid for by the DCCC, according to Mitchum’s California Superior Court complaint, which was obtained by TheDC.
The complaint, for defamation and emotional distress, states that Mitchum had a slight lead in independent polling in the final weeks of the campaign, prompting the Capps campaign to doctor Mitchum’s quote and splice it in ads next to a statement identifying Mitchum as a “Tea Party backed guy.”
“DEFENDANT DCCC purchased $99,000 worth of advertising space, (an extraordinary amount in such a small market), in the final weekend of the campaign,” according to Mitchum’s complaint.
For Mitchum, it’s a matter of integrity.
“Most every day, someone from either political party stops, calls or emails me to express disbelief at the brazen campaign improprieties of the Capps regime. No matter the political party; they know right from wrong,” Mitchum said. “Appreciating the fabric out of which this country is woven, I cannot allow our value system to be torn by this deception of the American people.”
The DCCC did not return requests for comment for this report by press time.